The human body can not run without oxygen. Oxygen is the key ingredient in the chemical reaction that powers the muscles. The way the body gets oxygen is by breathing in air and then extracting the oxygen that is contained in the air. Consequently, if a runner does not under proper breathing while running, he or she will not intake enough oxygen and his or her performance will really suffer. What is the proper way of breathing while running?
One common mistake that runners make is to think that faster and deeper breathing while running means more oxygen to the body. Although this may technically be true, breathing too hard also prevents carbon dioxide from exiting the body – air contains both oxygen and carbon dioxide. It is important to note that humans inhale in order to obtain oxygen and exhale in order to release the left-over carbon dioxide.
By focusing only on the inhale, a person is not able to release sufficient carbon dioxide. The bloodstream will pick up this extra carbon dioxide, instead of oxygen, and transport it throughout the body. Therefore, breathing too hard while running will result in the bloodstream providing less oxygen to the muscles, heart, and brain of runners. This can result in cramping, fatigue, and dizziness.
The best way breathe while running is to focus on relaxed inhales and exhales. Pay more attention to the exhale to release as much carbon dioxide as possible and to make room for plenty of oxygen. If you feel yourself engaging in gasping breathing while running, take a moment to collect yourself and slow down your breathing. Your body will thank you.